Italy sends navy to Libyan waters to fight human smuggling

  • Dominika Jandová
  • 2.8.2017 08:33

On 28 July the Italian government approved a plan to send several naval ships to Libyan shores. Based on an agreement between the Italian government and the Libyan Government of National Accord (GNA) headed by Fayez al-Sarraj, the navy will cooperate with Libyan forces to curb human smuggling and migration.

The agreement between Libya and Italy is due to enter into force on 1 August and the mission should be launched next week. EU's operation Sophia, whose mandate was extended on Tuesday 25 July until the end of 2018, already operates in the Mediterranean with the same purpose. Earlier, the media reported that French President Emmanuel Macron is planning to build hotspots for migrants in Libya, where officials could check asylum seekers, this year. Later statements by the President's Office, however, deny that Macron used the word hotspot or referred directly to Libya in the speech. The statement is also seen as rash due to the security situation in Libya, which, according to Élysée Palace, does not allow such measures. Both countries are actively participating in reducing migration flows mainly from Libya to Italy, where more than 94,000 migrants arrived this year.

About author: Dominika Jandová

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